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Do Bike Lanes Speed up Gentrification of Neighborhoods?

Home Forums General Columbus Discussion Development Do Bike Lanes Speed up Gentrification of Neighborhoods?

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    Walker Evans
    Walker Evans

    An interesting question…

    Are Bike Lanes Expressways to Gentrification?

    By Paul M. Davis

    08.30.11, 10:51am

    A plan to widen the bike lane on Portland’s N. Williams Avenue has reignited an ongoing debate over whether cyclists serve as the front line of gentrification. Jonathan Maus of Bike Portland reports that many in the neighborhood believe the attention given bicycle safety issues, in a community where pedestrian safety has long been ignored, represents a double standard.

    READ MORE: http://www.shareable.net/blog/are-bike-lanes-an-expressway-to-gentrification



    I certainly hope so, but I really doubt it.

    But I gotta love how improving a neighborhood is now something evil and a bane to all decent people.



    Does this mean I am getting a coffee shop down the block in the near future?

    Snark aside, interesting article. I saw this as especially relevant to the tension/conflict that arose out here when the W. Broad lanes were in the planning stages:

    But it’s worth reconsidering our assumptions. The pet causes of affluent whites have long received more attention than immediate issues affecting those in disadvantaged communities. And while making bicyclists safer on the road might seem to benefit everyone, such city infrastructure initiatives have complex political, race and class components.

    considering how many outside of the immediate neighborhoods presented the bike lanes as such a compelling need without thought to issues around crime/safety, economic development and so forth.

    I will say, though, that we will lose if we choose to look at improvements, be it bike lanes or dog parks or whatever, so narrowly. These can be great additions provided they fit within the fabric of the community. There needs to be a careful balance between those more pressing needs and aesthetic improvements that can benefit the larger region.

    Found this interesting as well:

    while African-American respondents were more likely to be concerned about their lack of knowledge about bicycling laws and rights and the feasibility of traveling with children.

    Seems Columbus isn’t the only city that gets a little too focused on infrastructure vs. education and outreach to community members.



    Twenty years ago when we were house shopping, Clintonville was off the list because of tight parking, no need to be close to downtown, and Columbus schools. The area around Broadway & High has blossomed as the greenway/bike trail connects more neighborhoods, IMO. Dedicated bike lanes (as opposed to punting “Share the Road” signs) would further desirability/gentrification in this area … so … yes.



    I couldn’t find the post, but someone had a blog post on racialicious (IIRC) and discussed how a colleague of the writer wanted photos of bike commuters for a project; final presentation there were few PoC and everyone was wearing a suit. when questioned about this, the response was along the lines of trying to make it clear that if one HAS to ride a bike (like the largely latino bikers in my neighborhood) it’s not the same as CHOOSING to ride a bike.

    Walker Evans
    Walker Evans

    jimbach said:
    But I gotta love how improving a neighborhood is now something evil and a bane to all decent people.

    That sentiment is nothing new. ;)



    Turns Out Bike Lanes Are Really Good for Local Business
    May 13, 2013 at 3:00 AM

    Good news for bike activists: Making a safe place on streets for cyclists (and pedestrians) boosts sales for the small businesses in the area. This according to a recent report from the New York Department of Transportation. The study found that on commercial blocks where new bike lanes were built, the businesses saw a nearly 50 percent increase in sales.

    READ MORE: http://www.good.is/posts/turns-out-bike-lanes-are-really-good-for-local-business/

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